“I want it all: the terrifying lows, the dizzying highs, the creamy middles”

Homer Simpson flat out refused the button-down life in his quote from the 2nd episode of the 6th season of one of television’s most popular shows.

It’s the terrifying lows that seem to be plaguing the recently renovated Newmarket courthouse as reported in this Newmarket Error piece from last week here:

There appears to be a multitude of problems with what was delivered in this costly reno. Among them was contracted technical work:

“The government, in it’s infinite wisdom, has contracted out technical services. They (the contracted workers) left, unbeknownst to us, and the problem wasn’t fixed.”

Then we read their is a complete lack of sound dampening in the structure which has already succumbed to a rodent infestation.

If that wasn’t a big enough collective WTF? we then read that in 2010, the province spent $115,000 cleaning up mold that was found in the main building.

Mold was the culprit to an additional $600,000 cost, not captured in the project contingency for the renos to the Aurora Family Leisure Complex.

The same Aurora Family Leisure Complex that has come under some serious fire by its users. I explored that in a previous post here: https://wattstrending.wordpress.com/2015/04/20/two-fer/

As an Art patron, draughtsman, watercolourist, philanthropist and prominent social thinker in the 19th century John Ruskin’s ideas are widely recognized as having anticipated interest in environmentalism, sustainability and craft.

Here is what he had to say about awarding contracts to the lowest bidder:

“It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money that’s all. When you paytoo little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot – it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better.”

Wisdom that seems to be lost continually in York Region as we witnessed with the massive cost overruns to the York subway connection. I commented on that here:

As Aurora struggles to build, renovate and sustain infrastructure it needs to do so with both a far greater level of engagement as well as capturing contingencies with far greater accuracy.

Awarding contracts to the lowest bidder while promising the creamy middle of "an exceptional quality of life for all" is like playing a game of snakes and ladders with live venomous snakes and ladders made by the contractor who won the lowest bid.


One thought on ““I want it all: the terrifying lows, the dizzying highs, the creamy middles”

  1. Ah yes ..but built into every tender process is the statement lowest bid will not necessarily be accepted. Qualified staff are responsible to analyse bids and make a determination On price validity . Also background for performance are to be checked. There’s plenty of room for error despite those precautions. The biggest being a lack of oversight by the client during construction.
    I understand mold was created during the construction by opening up the building and allowing warm moist air from the pool area to mix with cold in the arena.
    I believe the worst is yet to come. The job’s nowhere near done. The project budget is already overspent by almost twenty-five per cent. And Council is planning to talk to fitness facility users about improvements that were never planned.

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